AS the Lord Mayor of York, Coun Keith Hyman prepared to lead the city in joint Diamond Jubilee and York 800 celebrations, he issued this message to its citizens. “What a great year for the City of York.

“I hope everyone will get the chance to take part in some of the many celebrations that are being organised by local people for their local community.

“From street parties to village galas, there should be a great atmosphere and the chance for people to meet new as well as old friends.”

Today he will attend the Royal Salute in Museum Gardens, which will be fired by soldiers of 103 Regiment Royal Artillery (V) with sea, army and air cadets at noon before inspecting the parade with Brigadier Greville Bibby, commander of 15 (North East) Brigade and York Garrison.

On Monday, the Lord Mayor will light the city council beacon on Bachelor Hill, Acomb, as York joins in the National Beacon Chain of more than 4,000 beacons from Shetland to Land’s End.

The location of the York beacon has been moved to Acomb from St Helen’s Square. Beacons will also be lit at Poppleton, Askham Bryan and Acaster Malbis, on Sutton Bank, at Scarborough Castle and on top of Garrowby Hill, as well as many other sites across North and East Yorkshire.